451. Let Us

I feel that we are on the eve of a new era, when there is to be great harmony between the Federal and Confederate. I cannot stay to be a living witness to the correctness of this prophecy; but I feel it within me that it is to be so. The universally kind feeling expressed for me at a time when it was supposed that each day would prove my last, seemed to me the beginning of the answer to “Let us have peace.” – U. S. Grant

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450. The Bridge

Over the great bridge, with the sunlight through the girders making a constant flicker upon the moving cars, with the city rising up across the river in white heaps and sugar lumps all built with a wish out of non-olfactory money. The city seen from the Queensboro Bridge is always the city seen for the first time, in its first wild promise of all the mystery and the beauty in the world.

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449. Think About Your Soul Often (Even If You Don’t Believe You Have One)

It doesn’t matter if your objective, metaphysical ‘Soul’ exists or not, and survives physical death or not, or what happens afterwards if it does.

What matters is thinking about your soul.

Despite all the looser spiritual world views you can subscribe to nowadays, and despite their more dogmatic religious equivalents, surprisingly little attention has, in my view, been given to just what a Soul Is.

And how it feels to think about it.

And what that thinking does to how you feel about … yourself.

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448. Another Present Question

If you feel bad about how little you achieve in a day, then try to lower your expectations. Not too much, just a little, until you feel better. Praise yourself for what you have achieved. Affirm that you will achieve more of what is truly important, just not today.

It sounds like hard work – this kind of control – and it is. But it is much harder on you to succumb to the allure of bashing yourself about all the things you can’t do in a given day and how problematic that is.

That is the result of expectations that have become toxic – blocks to actually realizing and achieving something because you spend too much time to worry about these expectations and why they are not fulfilled more.

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444. The Secret of Relaxation

So perhaps the important part was just that I recognized that if I had to have a good experience here and now,  and feel more relaxed and refreshed when Jay and Char came back … well, then it was all about NOT demanding anything of myself. Just … relaxing. Use the time I had available to relax to … relax. And not catch up with x, y and z.

Strange that such a simple truth can be so difficult to make a habit. But if you can you are indeed very powerful!

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442. Something Important

Went swimming today with Jay and it was exhausting but great. He really likes water, the little one – or so I fancy. Especially chasing after a ball in water as I hold him.

There, nothing earth-shattering new to report, but something important.

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439. Healthy Tension

“St. Augustine said, “Thou hast made us for thyself, O Lord, and our hearts are restless until they find their rest in thee.” Our dissatisfaction could, therefore, be the admission and awakening of our longing for the eternal. Rather than being simply the edge of some personal emptiness, it could be the first step in the opening up of our eternal belonging…desire cultivates dissatisfaction in the heart with what is, and kindles an impatience for that which has not yet emerged…There should always be a healthy tension between the life we have settled for and the desires that still call us. In this sense our desires are the messengers of our unlived life, calling us to attention and action while we still have time here to explore fields where the treasure dwells!” – John O’Donohue

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438. Grateful

overall I have a good feeling that Jay’s body – all of his body – is developing in the right direction, so to speak. And that this thing about the head is going to get even better.

I feel less anxious about it than just a month or two ago. But I guess the added pressures during these weeks, e.g. with regard to my mother’s cancer, work and moving in and out of our apartment – all that contributed to me and Char being more sensitive to what happened with Jay.

But when I really sit down and … take time to feel, I do feel that he is developing as he should. In this respect.

And … in all other respects he is a super-healthy and normal little boy. And I feel deeply, deeply grateful for that.

It is worth taking time to feel that.

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